Childrens Personal Injury Claims
Personal injury claims can be pursued by children but there are a number of additional rules that apply to the way in which a childrens personal injury claims can be brought. Children are considered to be any person under the age of 18 and by law, they cannot pursue a claim for personal injuries without the help of a guardian who is over the age of 18 acting on their behalf as a “litigation friend”.
The role of litigation friend is usually taken on by a parent unless there is a conflict of interest in them doing so. The most common conflict would be where a parent could be a possible defendant in a claim such as in a car crash where a parent was one of the drivers and liability is not clear.
Once a settlement has been agreed in a child’s case, the court must get involved in approving a settlement. This can often result in settlements taking some time to be reached because a court will not approve a settlement unless it is satisfied that a full recovery has been made by a child or an end result in recovery has been reached.
The money recovered for a client is usually paid into a court bank account where it is held on trust until the child claimant reaches the age of 18. The court may be persuaded to release some of the funds early if they are satisfied that the funds are required for the benefit of the child. A fairly strict approach is applied by judges considering the release of personal injury funds for a child early. So, they are unlikely to allow money being released to enable a child to purchase a playstation! A laptop for educational use may be more of a legitimate item.
The individual approach applied at JS Miller Solicitors means that we will guide you through the process of bringing a child’s personal injury claim all the way. We will ensure that your child’s claim is properly and thoroughly prepared and progressed achieving the maximum settlement amount possible.